A committee constituted by the Panjab University vice-chancellor has indicted a senator of cheating the varsity while deputing three persons as centre and assistant superintendents in 2014 annual exams.
Tribhuvan Ram, officiating principal of MR Government College, Fazilka, had forwarded his recommendation to appoint Rajinder Paul Singh as centre superintendent and Sheenam and Renu Bala as assistant centre superintendents, to the university through senate member Munish Verma for 2014 annual examinations. All three persons, who are not employees of the college, were shown as assistant professors working in the college, and were deputed on exam duty on April 1, 2014.
As per the rules, the centre superintendents and supervisory staff are appointed at the university examination centres on the recommendation of principals of the affiliated colleges. Moreover, only teaching staff can be recommended by the principals for duties.
The fraud came to light on April 4, 2014, when a flying squad of the university visited the centre and recommended removal of all three. The varsity also received a complaint alleging that a fraud was committed with the university.
Subsequently, a five-member committee comprising justice GC Garg (retd), VK Sibal, GK Chatrath, Jagpal Singh and Ashok Goyal, all four PU fellows, was constituted to probe the matter.
When contacted, Munish Verma termed the report fake and shifted blame of making the appointments without checking eligibility on the varsity.
What the report says
Holding Tribhuvan Ram guilty of dereliction of his duties, the report stated that he acted in an irresponsible manner by e-mailing a blank document bearing his signature and seal of his office, which was later misused by Munish Verma for securing the appointment of centre/assistant superintendents. As per the report, Rajinder Pal Singh, Sheenam and Renu Bala deliberately gave wrong information in order to secure appointment as centre/assistant superintendents with the aim to get undue gain and held them guilty of cheating the varsity.
Coming down heavily on Munish Verma, the reported stated that he is at the centre of the controversy and is known to all the persons who played a role in the entire episode. The report reads: "It can safely be concluded that on insistence of Verma, Tribhuvan Ram e-mailed a blank pro forma, which bore his signatures and seals of his office. The pro forma was used by Verma who got it filled from Rajinder Pal Singh, Sheenam and Renu Bala. The pro forma was submitted in the conduct branch." The report further said: "Verma, in order to ensure confidentiality, got the letters of appointment collected from university through others. He thus ensured that even the principal of MR Government College did not come to know about the appointments."
Terming it unbecoming of him as a senator, the report criticised Verma for not appearing before the committee despite repeated reminders.
Bid to shield?
In a letter to the vice-chancellor, justice GC Garg (retd) stated that senator GK Chatrath participated in all the proceedings, but refused to sign the report in spite of requests and long persuasion without assigning any reasons. "It would have been alright had he refused to be a member of the committee or not participated in the proceedings of the committee, but once he participated it was expected of him to sign the report or record thereon his own reasoning and conclusion after disagreeing with all to any of the conclusions arrived at by the other members of the committee," said Garg in the letter.
The report maintained that Ashok Goyal, another member of the committee, did not participate in any of the proceedings of the committee.
The report was tabled in the last syndicate meeting and was referred to the senate. The senate is scheduled to meet next